The most recent report from the Medicare board of trustees estimated that Medicare's hospital trust fund will be able to cover all obligations until 2030, but strongly suggested legislative action to improve solvency. A House committee hearing this week will examine the program's sustainability and discuss “how to keep it from going bankrupt.”
Rep. Pat Tiberi (R-Ohio), chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee's Health Subcommittee, said in a statement that making sure seniors have access to high-quality healthcare is a top priority.
“That's why my Ways and Means colleagues and I are working toward commonsense solutions that will preserve and strengthen Medicare not only for our parents and grandparents, but also for our children and grandchildren. (This hearing) is a critical step in our effort,” he said, regarding his first hearing as chairman.
Tiberi took over the health panel post in November, replacing Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), who stepped in as Ways and Means chairman after Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) became House speaker. Tiberi said then he would focus on dismantling the Affordable Care Act.
“We will build on our efforts to make Medicare more efficient and effective so we can keep Medicare's promise to tomorrow's seniors,” he added.
Last year, HHS said Medicare spending was $316 billion less than expected between 2009 and 2013. Officials said then that alternative payment models focusing on quality of care and efforts to combat abuse were major reasons for the savings. No witnesses have been announced for this week's hearing.